Gary Smith has always loved superheroes and been fascinated by the idea of having special powers. Over the years he has put the assorted comics trivia in his head to good use, writing for Comic Book Resources and the Big Glasgow Comic Page, and teaching classes on Marvel Comics.
While Gary's current day job is as a researcher for local government, he has previously gained a Doctorate in American History. Though, he hasn't yet managed to find a way to slot Abraham Lincoln into one of his books, but he'll keep trying!
Here are some fun things about Gary:
Do you have another job other than being a writer?
My day job is as a researcher for my local Council, and in my spare time I volunteer as a classroom assistant in my local primary school. My favorite activity with the children? Reading, of course!
Did you ever think you would be unable to finish your first novel/novella/short story?
I had no expectation of finishing my first novel, fully expecting it to be abandoned after a few thousand words due to the time-pressures of normal life. What helped immeasurably was NaNoWriMo. Having that 50,000 word goal to aim for in one month gave me something to strive for, and although it involved numerous late nights and early mornings, it was all worth it in the end. And what I found to my surprise was that I didn't mind the lack of sleep because it was such a joy to finally bring these characters to life.
What inspired you to write?
I've always loved to write but had never managed to carry an idea through to completion, having the stereotypical notebooks full of half-finished ideas and projects. What helped me finally flesh out an idea was my participation in NaNoWriMo in 2015. My project for that became 'Unsaid Things', released in 2016, with the sequel 'Best Left Forgotten' released in 2018.
I think that there were two main things that helped me fall back in love with writing. Firstly, I began writing a weekly column for a Scottish comic book site, and really enjoyed the process of pulling ideas together and trying to engage the reader. Another important factor was the fact that I began writing stories to share with my two boys, who both love to read. My youngest son, who has just started school, looks to be following in my footsteps and is constantly writing stories and letters.
What has been your most successful avenue to get reviews on Amazon?
To be honest, getting reviews is the part of the writing and marketing process that I find hardest, and I am still learning as I go along. I have used ARC copies and ran free promotions of 'Unsaid Things', and plan to explore other avenues in the future.
Please checkout Gary's Book Best Left Forgotten (The Mentaleeze Chronicles Book 2)
Lauren Gunn may have a Mentaleeze condition, but she feels like one of the lucky ones. While other teens struggle with the burden of their new abilities, Lauren is enjoying the benefits of enhanced memory recall. Whether breezing through exams or recalling happy times with much-missed loved ones, it seems like her life has taken a long overdue turn for the better.
But Mentaleeze abilities always come at a price, and Lauren's is no exception. Now, with her life thrown into disarray and everything she knows at risk, Lauren's about to discover the hard way that some things are too dangerous to remember.
What is your next/latest project?
The Mentaleeze Chronicles in my ongoing series, focusing on a group of ordinary teenagers who develop enhanced mental abilities. The first book, 'Unsaid Things', features a 15 year old boy who finds that he can project his thoughts to all around him - something that he has no control over. When I was thinking who would be most likely to have thoughts they wouldn't want to share with the world, a teenage boy seemed a natural fit!
My latest novel is the sequel, 'Best left forgotten', which was released in February 2018. This features Lauren, a teenager who develops the ability of enhanced memory recall after the death of her father. At first this seems like a blessing and something that will make her life easier, but as with all Mentaleeze abilities there is a sting in the tail...
If you would like to follow Gary and his work you can follow him at the links below: